University of Wisconsin–Madison

Events

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  • Friday Forum: C. Michele Thompson
    12:00-13:30
    2016-10-07

    Room 206 Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, USA

    Room 206 Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, USA

    Funded with generous support from the University Lectures Committee:

    “The Early Life of the Vietnamese Buddhist Monk Physician Tuệ Tĩnh  and the Medical, Religious, and Physical Environment
    of 14th Century Ðai Việt”

    Michele Thompson photo

    C. Michele Thompson
    Professor of History
    Southern Connecticut University

    The Vietnamese monk physician Tuệ Tĩnh  (c. 1330-c.1400) is most famous for having been sent, in 1885, as a living present to the Ming Dynasty from the Vietnamese royal court.  This is at least in part because the medical text he wrote while living in China had a profound impact on the history of Vietnamese Traditional Medicine.  Tuệ Tĩnh wrote his most well known text, Nam Dược Thần Hiệu  (Miraculous Drugs of the South), specifically to explain Vietnamese medicine to the Chinese.  Tuệ Tĩnh had attracted the attention of the Trần Dynasty (1225-1400) through his work in the medical gardens and clinics attached to most Buddhist monasteries in Vietnam.  Through royal land grants and other forms of patronage Buddhist monasteries formed the closest thing to a public health system that Vietnam had and many members of the Vietnamese sangha were healers, pharmacists, and field botanists.  Before being sent to China, Tuệ Tĩnh had traveled extensively, within Vietnam, on a common Buddhist circuit of monasteries.  While some of his monastic companions spent most of their time studying and writing religious texts, Tuệ Tĩnh spent his time studying plants and composing texts in Nôm on them.  He also gathered local knowledge of plants and their properties, in fact some scholars regard Tuệ Tĩnh’s work as ethno-botanical in nature.

    While the Trần Dynasty has long been acknowledged as the most devoutly Buddhist of all Vietnamese royal dynasties, and the political influence of prominent Buddhists has been discussed by several scholars, the entwinement between the Trần royal family, Buddhist personages and institutions, and health care in Trần ruled Vietnam has received scant attention and to my knowledge no one has yet published on the physical and political environment which shaped this.

    Co-sponsored by the Center for Southeast Asian Studies,
    the Department of History,
    & the Department of the History of Science

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  • Friday Forum: Nathan McGovern
    12:00-13:30
    2016-10-14

    Room 206 Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, USA

    Room 206 Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, USA

    “Buddhist Brahmans:
    The Royal Court Brahmans of Thailand”

    mcgovernpica

    Nathan McGovern
    Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies

    University of Wisconsin-Whitewater

    Even in the present day there is a coterie of Brahmans who perform rituals for the King of Thailand. Although these Brahmans are fully assimilated into Thai culture and have been so for many generations, they claim descent from actual Indian Brahmans who migrated to Siam in the Ayutthaya period or earlier. This talk will explore some of the evidence for the history of Brahmans in Siam, as well as ways of theorizing the role they play in an overwhelmingly Buddhist context.

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  • Friday Forum: Viet Thanh Nguyen
    12:00-13:30
    2016-10-21

    Room 206 Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, USA

    Room 206 Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, USA

    The 2nd Annual Judith L. Ladinsky Lecture

    “Creative Criticism, or Writing as an Other”

    Lecture and book discussion by
    Pulitzer Prize winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen

    ~ Co-sponsored by UW-Madison’s Asian American Studies Program ~

    978-0-674-66034-2-frontcoverimages

    Viet Thanh Nguyen is the Aerol Arnold Chair of English and Associate Professor of English and American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California, and is the Pulitzer Prize winning author of The Sympathizer; Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War; and Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America. For more info, see: http://vietnguyen.info/author-viet-thanh-nguyen.

    Reception with refreshments to follow the lecture!

    Mr. Nguyen will also speak and sign books at 7:30pm at
    the Wisconsin Book Festival on Saturday, October 22.

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  • Council on Thai Studies Conference at Northern Illinois University
    All day
    2016-10-28

    Please join us for the annual Council on Thai Studies (COTS) conference hosted by the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at Northern Illinois University on Friday, October 28 through Saturday, October 29, 2016. In addition to several panels, there will be two keynote addresses, the first by Dr. Mark Tanachai Padoongpatt (University of Nevada – Las Vegas) titled, “Dispatches from Thai America: Visibility, Legitimacy, and the Fight for Thai American Studies,” and the second by Dr. Ora-orn Poocharoen (Chiang Mai University) titled, “Thailand’s Public Administration: a Cocktail of Mixed Paradigms.”

    Please visit the COTS conference website for more information.

  • Friday Forum: Haydon Cherry
    12:00-13:30
    2016-10-28

    Room 206 Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, USA

    Room 206 Ingraham Hall, 1155 Observatory Dr, Madison, WI 53706, USA

    “The New Vietnam Revolutionary Party in Colonial Annam”

    haydon-cherry

    Haydon Cherry

    Assistant Professor of History
    Northwestern University

    Between 1925 and 1929, the New Vietnam Revolutionary Party was the most intellectually vibrant and politically vital Vietnamese political grouping in colonial Annam. A clandestine organization, the party successively went by many names: the Phục Việt, Hưng Nam, the Việt Nam Cách Mệnh Đảng, the Việt Nam Cách Mệnh Đồng Chí Hội, and the Tân Việt Cách Mệnh Đảng. The party provided an important meeting place for a wide variety of anti-colonial nationalists, ranging from reformers to radicals and nascent Communists, such as Trần Mộng Bạch, Đào Duy Anh, Tôn Quang Phiệt, and Trần Phú. This paper draws on published and unpublished colonial security reports, party documents, memoirs, newspaper articles, local and provincial histories, and retrospective assessments by former party members. The paper has three main objectives.  First, it discusses the organization of the New Vietnam Revolutionary Party, its membership, and goals. Second, the paper argues that members of the Party were involved in a lively and contentious intellectual culture in the old imperial capital of Huế that became increasingly radical: they published tracts, pamphlets, books, and newspaper articles, introducing modern social, political, and economic ideas to readers in Annam. Third, the paper argues that contrary to the received historiography, the New Vietnam Revolutionary Party had a broad rural base in the countryside of colonial Annam.  This latter point has significant consequences for our understanding of the revolutionary high tide of the Great Depression in Tonkin and Northern Annam, particularly the Nghệ Tĩnh Rebellion.

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